In its latest endeavor to surpass Florida as, perhaps, the most embarrassing state, the Arizona legislature just passed a bill that would make an addict who shares drugs with a buddy who then overdoses eligible for the death penalty. As if the negative press from Arizona’s own Stop the Steal effort and a Governor’s race where the losing candidate continues to declare victory wasn’t enough, this latest public relations stunt has brought Arizona to the pinnacle of legal foolishness.
Some Background on Fentanyl
There’s no disputing that Fentanyl is a vile and insidious drug that has caused thousands of overdose deaths, not just in Arizona, but across the country in recent years. A powerful opiate, often called “blues” or “M-30’s”, Fentanyl is infinitely more powerful that heroin and can cause respiratory failure and death within minutes. Many think that Fentanyl is the “blue devil” that notorious drug lord Chapo Guzman promised America that he would deliver. Thanks, Chapo. There’s a reason that you are serving your life sentence in an underground concrete bunker.
The public outrage and uproar over Fentanyl are justified. Federal, State, and local governments use broadcasting and billboards to warn people about the dangers of Fentanyl. Still, everyday people are dying from this horrible drug that is most commonly made in Mexico by the cartels and smuggled into the United States through its border states, including Arizona. Fentanyl is so addictive that the cartels are mixing it into other drugs, such as cocaine, to increase its addictive power.
Enter Anthony “J6” Kern, a local Arizona legislator who is best known for his involvement in the clown show CyberNinjas audit in the 2020 Arizona election and as chief taste tester for Matt Gaetz’s new line of sipping whiskey called Taint45. Kern has sponsored legislation (SB 1029) that adds fentanyl distribution to the list of crimes of felony murder in Arizona. Kern’s notion is that it will somehow curb the use of the drug by stopping the Mexican drug cartels in their tracks. More on that in a minute. But first,
What is Felony Murder in Arizona?
We all know what murder is; intentionally taking the life of another person without justification.
Felony murder essentially means that if you (or an accomplice) commit one of several enumerated crimes in Arizona (e.g., first degree (armed) burglary, kidnapping, armed robbery, etc.) and a death results – even if you didn’t directly cause or intend it – you can be charged with first degree murder and are eligible for the death penalty.
Kern’s new legislation adds distribution of Fentanyl to the list of crimes that can get you convicted of felony murder and a needle in your arm for purposes of delivering the death penalty. Take note of the rich irony of punishing an addict by giving them drugs via a needle.
Why the New Arizona Legislation is Idiocy at its Finest
It’s commonplace for addicts to share drugs. Imagine if one addict shares drugs with another and that addict overdoses and dies. The addict who shared the drugs in the first place could now be prosecuted for first degree murder (based on the predicate offense of distribution of fentanyl) and executed if convicted. Meanwhile, Chapo’s peeps are sitting in Mexico raking in the Benjamins (is there an equivalent in Pesos? If so, please message me), unfazed by the new legislation.
Kern’s legislative stunt looks good to his blue hair constituents in his war of good over evil. But the reality of the situation is that this blustering really accomplishes nothing except create some campaign talking points to those who would elect George Santos (aka Anthony Devolder and Kitara Ravache) president merely because of his party affiliation.
Cartels don’t care about the new law. They have no soul. If they did, they wouldn’t be infecting hundreds of thousands of people with this poison. While hell may have a special place for them someday, despite their prayers to Jesus Malverde, that does little to curb their behavior and flooding the United States with Fentanyl.
What the new legislation does do is expose addicts to the death penalty for crimes of consumption. There’s no real deterrent to them – they’re addicted and high and not thinking about the consequences of sharing their personal use stash.
And what about the cocaine dealer? Not saying that this is ok, legal, or acceptable – but they are selling blow, not Fentanyl. If someone keels over because some Fentanyl was mixed into the cocaine long before the dealer ever got his hands on it, and without his knowledge, does he have the legal intent to sell Fentanyl? Is he responsible to conduct quality assurance testing of his cocaine to make sure it doesn’t contain Fentanyl before selling it?
Talk to Phoenix’s Most Experienced Major Narcotics Criminal Defense Attorney
Jason Lamm is Phoenix’s most experienced criminal defense attorney in the area of narcotics and drug trafficking crimes. Jason has successfully defended wiretap, conspiracy, and money laundering charges. He is experienced not just in Fentanyl cases, but also other drugs cases including conspiracy to distribute cocaine and transportation of marijuana for sale. Confidential consultations can be scheduled by calling (602) 663-9100.
While no one in their right mind could possibly think Fentanyl is a good thing, the overreaction by the Arizona legislature and its low-level pandering politicians, could create badly written laws that are ripe to being overturned in the courts. Kern’s new baby does nothing to stop the flow of drugs into Arizona. Instead of going after the head of the snake, it merely attacks the low hanging fruit. Not only does the new legislation defy common sense and logic, it’s just dumb.